Upscale homes on horizon |

Upscale homes on horizon

An 80-acre former ranch divided into 17 lots and open space is being billed as “one of Northern California’s most exclusive private communities.”

Developers of The Wolf held a project preview Friday on the property on Wolf Road south of Lime Kiln Road in southern Nevada County. They showed off snowy Sierra Nevada views, a pond, oak woods, grape vines and other amenities expected to attract buyers.

Auburn-based artist Doug Van Howd unveiled his bronze sculpture of a wolf, three times life size, that stands at the entrance to the development. Van Howd is known internationally for his renderings of western and wildlife subjects.

The 17 residential lots will range in size from 1.67 acres to 4.24 acres. A homeowners’ association will control the common areas, including 36 acres of oak woods that will be protected in perpetuity.

Lot prices are expected to start in the mid-$400,000s, project general manager Jim Wright said. The listing agent is Kathy Papola of Network Real Estate.

As the California Department of Real Estate has not finished its review of the plans, developers cannot yet say how much houses there will cost, Wright said. The houses will be at least 3,200 square feet in size.

“The theme in the design is rustic, Old World, Tahoe. Each parcel will have a gated entry, ” Wright said. “It’ll be upscale.”

Some custom lots will be available.

Although affordable housing remains a need in the county, The Wolf is exempt on two counts.

County zoning requires that affordable units be included in developments of 20 living units or more, regardless of the acreage. In addition, those developments must be in or near populated areas. Rural areas, like those around upper Wolf Road, also are exempt from affordable housing requirements, Nevada County planner Todd Herman said.

At one time, the property was a working cattle ranch. Nevada County first approved development plans for the parcel in 1991. The county approved a revised plan in 2001 that clustered homes in one area of the property in order to preserve natural resources, Herman said.

It was bought two years ago by Wright and Loomis-based Jay Selby Sr., pioneer of the hydroseeding system used to landscape freeways, and son Jay Selby Jr. The Selbys are the majority owners.

The project already has drawn the attention of area contractors, several of whom have expressed interest in the properties, Wright said.

Pending the final approval from state and county planners, work on lots could begin this summer, Wright said.


To contact staff writer Trina Kleist, e-mail or call 477-4231.

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